Architects On Film

Architecture in film at the Chicago Cultural Center

On Wednesdays throughout the Chicago Architecture Biennial, local and visiting architects and designers present films that have touched their lives and careers. The highly curated selection ranges from films that have influenced their own thoughts on architecture to those that can spark conversations about the intersection between film, architecture, philosophy, and society. Screenings will be followed by conversations with presenters. This is a free event! No ticket required.

Select Wednesdays, 6:00PM 

Chicago Cultural Center
Claudia Cassidy Theater
78 E. Washington St.
2nd Floor

The Wiz


Country: USA (1978)
Director: Sidney Lumet

Featured Architect: Amanda Williams whose work centers on color, race, and space. She uses vivid, culturally derived colors to paint abandoned houses on Chicago’s South Side, marking the pervasiveness of undervalued Black space. Accolades include a 3Arts Award, a Joyce Foundation scholarship, and a Robert James Eidlitz Fellowship in Ethiopia.

Synopsis: The film version of the popular Broadway musical retells the events of “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” through the eyes of Dorothy, a young African-American kindergarten teacher (Diana Ross) who’s “never been below 125th Street.” On her journey down the yellow brick road of ’70s Manhattan, she encounters a garbage-stuffed scarecrow (Michael Jackson), a broken-down tin man (Nipsey Russell), and a cowardly lion (Ted Ross) posing as a stone statue outside a museum. Together, they seek out the Wiz (Richard Pryor), a powerful wizard living in Emerald City who may be able to help Dorothy get home.

  • Screening 1: Wed, Dec 9; 6:00pm

Note: This is a FREE event held at the Chicago Cultural Center; featuring a conversation with Jacqueline Stewart

Veiled Sites

Director: various

Synopsis: Using a multiplicity of formal cinematic devices (visual essays, animation, documentary), these shorts explore the relationship between humans and the space they inhabit. Discover American and international filmmakers’ perspectives on various architectural endeavors and oddities and the impact of architecture on our daily life and sensory experience. Preceded by winners for the AIA “I Look Up Film Challenge.”

  • Screening 1: Wed, Dec 16; 6:00pm

Note: This is a FREE event held at the Chicago Cultural Center

Get Social

Program Partners